Preston man weathers Hurricane Irma in Florida
A Preston man has spoken of his terror as Hurricane Irma swept through his Florida home.
Chris Game, who moved from Ribbleton to America in 1999, described the scenes as a “train wreck.”
For a previous story on Irma click here /weather-warning-for-lancashire-as-irma-strikes-usa-1-8746338
The 54-year-old said: “We watched the storm come up the coast on the TV and kept going outside to monitor the weather for ourselves. We kept my 15-year-old son and the neighbours teenagers occupied with board games and lots of food and snacks. “At 11pm I took the last look outside and locked the door, as the hurricane was upon us. “We had a ‘safe room’ in the centre of a house that has no outside walls or windows and had enough supplies until the storm passed. As it happened we did not need the room and we all ended up sleeping in beds around 3am in the morning. “It was definitely the scariest thing I have ever witnessed and would definitely evacuate next time. “The anticipation of what was heading your way and the constant change in direction of the storm was nothing less than terrifying, but you have to hold it together. Watching the news was like watching a train wreck, you just cannot stop watching and whilst that was really useful information it made the anticipation much worse. “We were very fortunate and did not lose power but millions of people are without power and utilities across five states. “The day after the storm we woke to the Alafia river in our back yard. We built the house approx an acre from the river but it had swelled over 22 feet higher than normal.“We are fortunate to live in a small tight community and we were in touch through the night via a group text, there were also multiple social media sites available where you could sign up for text updates as the storm moved through. “The support and messages we have had was amazing. We must have received 150 support messages from people we know all over the world but most of them came from Prestonians. "That is very touching and much appreciated.
"This storm was handled very well in my opinion. The Government officials and local Emergency team leaders were on the news regularly giving updates and information on evacs and shelters. They give you the hard facts but it helps you to make decisions."
Chris moved to the United States in 1999 as a software consultant. He is now working in Tampa Florida, as a senior director in billing operations.